China airlines will not pay EU emissions tax: industry body

HONG KONG Wed Jan 4, 2012 4:12am EST

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HONG KONG (Reuters) - The China Air Transport Association, which represents the country's four major airlines including flag-carrier Air China Ltd, said on Wednesday that Chinese airlines would not pay any charges under the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

"China will not co-operate with the European Union on the ETS, so Chinese airlines will not impose surcharges on customers relating to the emissions tax," Deputy Secretary-General Cai Haibo told Reuters in a telephone interview.

The EU began charging airlines for carbon emissions on flights to and from Europe from January 1.

(Reporting by Alison Leung; Editing by Chris Lewis)